Disclaimer: I own nothing. Joss Whedon has that honor. I’m just taking the characters out for a joyride.
Synopsis: Xander gets turned into a vampire hybrid and gets shoved into another dimension. When he comes out he’s not the same. Will Spike be able to reach him or has he gone round the bend permanently?
The next night Spike heads over to the Hospital wing of the Slayer Compound to go visit Xander for the first time. After jumping through enough hoops at the main desk to set his fangs on edge and possibly signing about eight different forms a skittish young orderly lead him upstairs. As they get closer to what he gathers is Xander’s room he notices the orderly getting more and more nervous. Finally not being able to take it anymore Spike turns toward the small man.
“Will you stop it? You’re setting me on edge.” Spike snarls.
“Sorry sir. Mr. Bloody sir, it’s just I don’t like coming up here is all…” the man whimpers. Spike could hear the man’s heart doing a samba within his chest cavity and this only peaks his interest.
“Why?” Spike asks coming to a complete stop.
“Why what?” the orderly asks looking confused.
“Why are you so bloody scared of bein’ up here? Nothin’ up here except you, me, the walls and carpet dating back to the 70’s.”
“It’s just that Mister Harris doesn’t like anyone visiting sir.”
“And why’s that?”
“Don’t know sir, he tends to growl and snarl at anyone who goes in. Even the kitchen crew refuses to come up. He’s thrown food at them, saying it tastes like nothing. Nobody knows what that means.”
Spike looks between the quivering mass of a human in front of him and down the hall. Sticking his hands in the pockets of his duster he nods.
“Right. Tell you what. You tell me which room this snarlin’ beast is in and then you can run on down to the others all safe as houses. I think I can find my way without an escort.”
“You sure? No one is allowed to be left alone with him. What if he hurts you?” The orderly says looking concerned about possibly leaving Spike alone with a crazed hybrid vampire.
“Look mate, I ‘ppreciate the sentiment but I can hold my own. Trust me.”
“You sure?” Spike nods and pointing down the hall says “Get!” Smiling the orderly turns and starts to walk away, turning he simply says “room 418 on the left.”
Spike watches as the man all but runs away and shaking his head in disgust turns and makes his way to Xander’s room.
Spike stands before the door to room 418 and contemplates whether to go in or not.
Before he has a chance to make up his mind the door opens and he’s faced with one Alexander Harris staring and studying him. Spike shifts under the intense gaze of Xander’s one brown eye and one eerie yellow one.
“You my new babysitter they sent?” Xander growls before turning and stalking back into the room.
“Hmmph…” Xander replies as he stalks over to the open window that overlooked the forest on the edge of the Slayer compound.
Spike follows quietly behind taking in the disarray of the room, there’s paper strewn about and pieces of what must have been lunch or dinner from the night before sticking to the walls in a Pollock design. What stood out to Spike as he eyes the room is a deck of cards set out with two hands of cards as if Xander is playing a game of Gin Rummy with someone.
“Don’t think you need a babysitter Pet, a housekeeper maybe” Spike mutters as his fingers land in a sticky substance on a side table.
“They keep sending me up substance but it’s all bland” Xander explains as he watches Spike stroll around his room.
“What makes it bland?” Spike asks perching himself on the edge of the bed.
“It all tastes like dust. I’m HUNGRY!” Xander replies as he slowly walks toward Spike.
Spike sits still and waits as he wants to see what Xander would do. Xander stops in front of Spike and leaning down presses his nose to Spike’s neck right below his right ear.
If Spike had a heart beat it would be beating like a drum. Instead he keeps his facial features neutral as to not spook the young man.
“Mmmm….” Xander hums.
Standing back up Xander sways back and forth his eyes closed. Opening them he looks down at Spike in wonder.
“You don’t smell like the other pink metallics why?”
“Pink Metallics? That some new rock band I haven’t heard of?” Spike asks clearly confused.
“THEM!” Xander explodes suddenly pointing toward the door. “They are all pink and smell like….like..THIS” Xander says holding up a fork triumphantly.
“They smell like silverware?”
“No. They smell like what this is made of. That and they smell like the small creatures I lived off of. I’d skin them and their juices would run. They smell like that.”
“You mean blood. They smell like blood? Bloody hell, of course they would. I’m sure you can also hear them as well?”
Xander nods and walking over to the window goes still. “You’re different than them. You can stay. Now we must be quiet…” He says staring out the window.
Something prickles at the back of Spike’s neck watching Xander. He’s staring out at something in the dark that only he can see.
Standing up and walking over he stands next to Xander and looks out the window into the inky blackness. Whatever is out there, Xander is the only one who can see it.
“What do you see?” Spike asks.
Xander turns to him in full game face and simply replies “We must be quiet, Mother is sleeping.”
“Right. Don’t want to wake Mother do we?” Spike mutters.
“We must be quiet, the monsters will hear…and HE will get angry.” Xander states before going quiet.
“Right.” Spike says pulling out his cellphone and hitting redial gets Buffy on the first ring.
“What is it Spike?”
“Buffy listen, I’m up here with Xander and he’s rambling and staring out at the forest on the East side and says there’s monsters’ watching. Can you do a quick sweep and let me know if you find anything? Might be nothing but better to be safe than sorry right?” Spike explains.
“He’s talking? Of course he is, stupid me. He’s got you rattled pretty good though. From what Giles says he’s good at that. Okay I’ll take a few girls and weapons and let you know what we find.” Buffy replies.
“Thanks Buffy, I ‘prreciate it.”
Shutting the phone he puts it in his dusters pocket and walks back over to Xander. Standing next to him watching the small figures of Buffy and a four other Slayers head off to the woods and disappearing into the trees.
Xander sees Buffy and the other Slayers and turning goes over to his corner and sliding down goes into his normal position of arms wrapped around his knees.
“Xander?” Spike asks. Xander keeps staring straight ahead. Noticing he gets no response, Spike goes and grabs a chair sitting down he waits for word from Buffy.
“Guess all we can do now is wait…” Spike mutters into the quiet.